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May 23, 2018 |

Archive for » May 23rd, 2018«

Insider tips on how and when to get the best deals resale shopping

LITTLE ROCK, Ark, (KTHV) – Aisle after aisle, rack after rack — thrift shopping is not always an easy feat but the payoff can be huge. A 2018 report by thredUP shows that by switching to thrift shopping for a year, shoppers can save nearly $2,500 dollars. Photojournalist, Chris Ross and morning anchor, Amanda Jaeger, headed to three different resale shops in town to get the insider secrets to finding the trendiest items for the best prices.

Here are Plato’s Closet’s insider tips for finding the best deals from Store Manager Cody Jones.

  1. Sign up for text alerts and keep an eye out for their annual 90 percent off all clearance sale that happens nearly every season’s change.
  2. Put the employees to work for you to find your favorite brands and styles. They’ll search the store for your favorite items and hold them for you.
  3. Follow their Instagram for exclusive deals that hit Instagram before the store floor. You can even comment “hold” on pictures of items that you like and then pick it up at the store.

Goodwill’s insider tips to finding the best deals from Public Relations and Marketing Manager, Kerri Nettles:

  1. Shop on Sundays. They choose a tag color and any items with that tag only cost you $1 dollar.
  2. Look for the tag color of the week. Items with that tag color are half off all week.
  3. Shop right after New Year’s. The biggest donation time is between Christmas and New Year’s. Spring cleaning is also a big donation time. You’ll find tons of kitchen accessories, housewares, furniture and more. People will often donate items they got for Christmas but don’t want or need.

Live Thankfully’s insider tips on how to find the best deals from Executive Director Kimberly Cook:

  1. Like Plato’s Closet, you can follow their Instagram to see items first, place holds and pick them up in store.
  2. Bring in clothes to donate and instantly get a $5 credit toward your purchase. Also, like Goodwill, Live Thankfully is a nonprofit. That means you can get a tax receipt for donations.
  3. Shop on Saturday. They have flash sales on certain items saving you an additional 50% off.

There are also many places to shop resale online like thredUP, Poshmark and Facebook Marketplace. Here are some tips for navigating those sites:

  1. Make sure to sign up for email alerts from your favorite online resale companies to get notified of flash sales.
  2. Some sites will allow you to bargain a lower price on items. On Poshmark and Facebook Marketplace, you can ask the seller to sell for a lower price. Many sellers often price items higher because they expect people to make lower offers. Don’t be afraid to negotiate!
  3. Make sure to check multiple sites for the same item. With so many resale options out there, you could find a lower price on an item at a different website. Or, call a local resale shop first to see if they have the item you are interested in. If they have it, you’ll save on the shipping fee.
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Best saucepan sets

From the Saturday dinner party to end of the month fridge finish-ups, investing in a really good set of saucepans is essential for any homecook. There’s nothing worse than toiling away over a hot stove, only for half of your dinner to get stuck to the pan.

Not only will a fabulous well-made set of saucepans not do that, but a fabulous well-made set of saucepans will also look fabulous too – a way to enhance your kitchen interiors without even thinking about it.

From non-stick to stainless, we’ve stirred and boiled our way through the very best saucepan sets on the market. To find out what they are, see below…

Cuisine pro iConix

The Cuisine pro iConix is the Rolls Royce of pan sets — with a price tag to match. The saucepan has some reassuring weight to it; the anodised body is twice as hard as stainless steel, yet manages to look slick and stylish too.

The pans heat up in the blink of an eye, is non-stick and cooks all food evenly. The exterior of the pans are also non-stick which makes cleaning and switching between cooking jobs simple.

The handles stay cool and their shape makes them easy to grip when full. Yes, this set is expensive, but it feels like it is built to last forever, plus it comes with a lifetime guarantee (just in case it doesn’t).

£800 (introductory offer £299.99) | Houseuk | Buy it now

Tefal Ingenio Saucepan Set

These saucepans had us at ‘nesting’; with ‘space’ (or lack of) the number one kitchen issue for most of us, these are fantastically practical. The handle completely detaches which means the three sturdy aluminum pans can slot easily inside each other – no protruding handles in sight.

One handle does all three and clips on and off easily so it can be transferred from one to the other when cooking with multiple pans. And despite being detachable, it is perfectly sturdy when clipped on, avoiding any wobbles or spills. The handle is easy to wash properly too, and fits neatly inside a kitchen draw.

£109.99 | Lakeland | Buy it now

Prestige three-piece non-stick saucepan set

Now it’s not all about looks, but these pans are something to see. They come in silver, copper and purple — more of a lovely red wine hue actually — and in sets of three, are a really a good way to add colour to your kitchen. On the hob they heat up relatively quickly for their price tag, and they wash really well too.

£65.99 | Wayfair | Buy it now

Saucepan set, stainless steel

For those on a budget, this set of five pans really is extraordinary value. They don’t have much weight to them, but they look simple and stylish in a classic silver and actually heat up faster than expected.

With three sizes of saucepan, a milk pan and a frying pan to boot, you can set-up your kitchen for just over twenty quid. Perfect if your culinary repertoire only extends to beans on toast… All in all, an absolute bargain.

£22.99 | Wilko | Buy it now

5-piece saucepan set

It’s a bit more expensive than the Tefal, but you get a milk pan and a frying pan thrown in to make this a set of five pieces. Classic silver with grey grips on the handles give these pans a timeless, traditional finish.

On the hobs they don’t disappoint: the aluminum base allows for good heat distribution and avoids pesky hot spots. On the whole this a great all-rounder pan set that will last you years.

£144.99 | Lakeland | Buy it now

Elite 6-piece set

Cranking it up a notch, the ProCook Elite cookware set is heading into more serious cooking territory. The large saucepan heats up with the flick of a switch and the litre marks on the inside are really handy mid-recipe.

If you are a serious cook (or like to try out more complex recipes), these pans will make your heart sing. They clean brilliantly, feel sturdy and solid, and the cool touch handles mean that you are not scrabbling around for oven mitts at the crucial moment.

With a 25-year guarantee, it’s an investment worth making.

£329 | Procook | Buy it now

Gourmet 6-piece set

On first handling, the Gourmet ProCook range is not the Elite, but then it’s not as expensive either. While it lacks the professional look and feel of its big sister range, it is half the price without losing too much of the quality.

The black design is smart, although it does make it look cheaper than it is. On the hob it is fast-heating and the strain and pour design was really handy for multi-pot dishes. It’s close to the Lakeland in price and quality, but you do get an extra piece with this one. A good alternative for keen cooks that don’t want to fork out for the Elite range.

£149 | Procook | Buy it now

Cuisinepro Capri

This pan set might look shiny with its stainless steel mirrored finish, but make no mistake: these pans are built for some serious cooking action. They actually feel slightly lighter than the ProCook Elite, which makes them easy to handle (although pan weight is really a matter of personal preference).

The handles are silicone which makes them oven and dishwasher safe so they are practical for cooking multiple dishes at once. They heat up as fast and evenly as you would expect in this price bracket and the steamer insert is a handy addition. All in all you won’t go far wrong with this set if you are happy to fork out for it.

£600 | Houseuk | Buy it now


The Tefal Ingenio set is hard to beat for saving space and cool-gadget factor, but for the serious chef the Cuisine pro iConix is well-worth saving for. If you just can’t justify the cash, then the Procook Elite is all the quality most of us will need, at half the price.

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For the Love of Clambakes, Someone Please Buy Us These Le Creuset Stockpots

Of the many splendid summer food traditions, none are so near and dear to our hearts as the clambake. (The fresh seafood! The summer corn! The dipping butter, people!) Which is why amaze-cookware-brand Le Creuset’s latest launch is pretty much our favorite yet. 

Meet: the new fleet of seafood stockpots. The summery collection includes an 8-quart mussel pot ($100), a 12-quart crab pot ($120), and a 16-quart lobster pot ($160), all featuring the brand’s signature enamel coating (in a checkered tablecloth colorway)—but with the adorable addition of vintage-esque crustacean designs. 

With cookware this chic and nautical in our arsenal, we might just try our hand at hosting the family clambake this year. (Sorry to steal your thunder, Aunt Mildred). 

RELATED: Le Creuset’s Latest Collection Is AN Ice Cream Dream (and Surprisingly Affordable, Too)

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House sticks a fork in military dinnerware amendments

House lawmakers served up defeat on two amendments Wednesday that would have required the military to buy only U.S.-made dinnerware and stainless steel flatware.

The votes came after Rep. Mac Thornberry stuck a knife into the arguments, saying that adding the measures to the National Defense Authorization Act would be a waste of money.

“I must oppose this amendment because there is simply no national security justification to mandate where DoD buys its plates and mugs,” said Thornberry, R-Texas, and chairman of the House Armed Services Committee. “Where does this stop? Where does this end? So last year we had knives and forks and spoons, this year we’ve got plates and mugs. Does it next go to the trays that they carry their food on? What about the plastic cups that they drink from? Do we just keep rolling with this and go to the hand soap and the toilet paper in the bathroom? I don’t know where it stops.”

Thornberry was reacting to two amendments spooned up during a full plate of measures on Wednesday. The first, by Rep. David McKinley, D-W.Va., focused on domestic dinnerware, while a second by Rep. Claudia Tenney, R-N.Y., concerned stainless steel. McKinley’s measure failed 160-252. Tenney’s amendment managed to scrape up more yes votes, coming in at 174-239.

McKinley said it’s a matter of safety for troops. “It would ensure access to safe dinnerware for our military, free from lead or other carcinogenic materials,” he said. “According to the National Institutes of Health and the Food and Drug Administration, there have been numerous violations involving lead and other contaminants in dinnerware coming from China and Mexico, and other suppliers around the world, leading to concerns for their use by American troops.”

But Thornberry’s nerves were steeled as he focused on the safety of the all-volunteer forks.

“It is absolutely true that we have had troops die from exposure from tainted food, and not having the appropriate tools has had an effect on the quality of our weaponry,” Thornberry said. “But I have never heard that argument apply when it comes to plates and bowls and knives or forks and spoons that we’re about the discuss with the next amendment.”

Tenney, in her remarks, made the issue less about safety and more about protecting American jobs. Her district includes Sherill Manufacturing, a flatware maker.

“My amendment encourages the free market principles of American competition and ingenuity,” she said. “This amendment does not cost the Department of Defense. Passing this amendment will prove to American entrepreneurs and visionaries that Congress’ stated support for American jobs and American manufacturing is not merely just lip service.”

But Thornberry wasn’t bowled over by the low cost estimates.

“Adding this mandate hurts our troops, because if these suppliers of plates are the best price, then what’s what DoD buys,” he said. “But if it costs more to have these plates, money has got to come from somewhere. And that money will come from bullets or fuel or other things that are essential for our troops to have.”

McKinley insisted that his safety arguments are stainless.

“This, by putting lead-free for American products, we would be able to have control so our troops, you say our troops can get sick from tainted food, they can get sick as well from the plates that they eat from if, if it migrates out of the material into their food when you put hot contents on it or you cook it in a microwave,” McKinley said. “Those things can happen with that.”

Thornberry said he wanted to know ware the problem was really coming from.

“Before we add this additional burden on our troops and what we provide to them, there ought to be a scintilla of evidence that this is a problem with the military,” he said. “Saying, well, somebody might get sick someday is not enough to say we’re going to take more money away from your needs and put it into plates and mugs.”

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This New Stand Mixer Is Better Than A KitchenAid –

In movies, it’s cute when all the dry ingredients for your chocolate chip cookies fly out of the stand mixer, covering you and your kitchen in white dust. “You’ve got flour on your nose,” the burly love interest whispers to the coy heroine — whose dream it is to open a bakery, but a childhood tragedy has always held her back — before he presses his lips to hers. But Nicholas Sparks flicks aside, no, thank you: I’ll keep my dough in my mixer until I’m ready to lick it off the paddle. Plus, Kenmore pretty much just made that whole sugar-everywhere debacle a thing of the past.

Remember, usually, if you want to add anything while your batter or dough is still churning, you’d have to risk life, limb, and clothing to get your hand below the head, above the bowl, and out of the way of the spinning whisk. But the bowl of Kenmore’s just-launched Elite Ovation Stand Mixer is completely enclosed by a 360-degree splash guard, and ingredients are poured in through an opening on the head of the structure. Every part of Kenmore’s model snaps apart, so the head and 360 guard lift together, still giving you access to the bowl, like with other mixers.

That hole on top does more than just gape open. It’s got accessories, like a funnel for pouring liquids; an egg separator, for when a recipe just requires the whites; and a grater, so shredded chocolate or cheese falls right into the bowl. All the typical bells and whistles you’re used to from a traditional mixer are there, too: interchangeable whisks and paddles, 10 speeds, a 500-watt motor.

BUY NOW Kenmore Elite Ovation Stand Mixer, $450,

Right now, the 5-Quart Kenmore Elite Ovation Stand Mixer, in either a burgundy and metallic gray shade, is available for presale on; the store plans to ship products in July. The price is steep — $450 — but comparable to a 5-Quart KitchenAid mixer, which retails on the brand’s site for the same amount. And Sears is offering an incentive if you press Buy Now, well, now. You could get $100 cash back in store points, free shipping, and an oddly unrelated discount on some sweet gold hoops. Sold!

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Grilled Spatchcock Chicken with Pan-Roasted Radishes and Green Beans

by Emily Kemme

Getting a whole chicken to cook evenly with char-crisped skin can be tricky if oven roasting. But cooking it on a grill in a cast iron skillet not only tastes wonderful, it takes the heat out of the kitchen in the summertime. It’s easy to do, once you know how to spatchcock the chicken. Make the meal even easier — and the house cooler — and pan roast a mix of radishes and green beans in the same cast iron skillet on the grill top while the chicken is resting.

The term “spatchcock” sounds funny, but the method is simple and quick. The goal is for the bird to have more accessible area so it cooks evenly. There are two schools of thought. One method involves removing the backbone, the other leaves it intact but snaps the breastbone to splay the chicken. Keeping the backbone adds extra flavor. Use sharp kitchen shears or a chef’s knife to cut the bird open on one side of the backbone. Turn the bird over, make a little cut in the breastbone, and then snap it.

The chicken is grilled first and flattened by placing a cast iron skillet on top of it for the first part of the cooking process. Finish by roasting in the skillet.

Grilled Spatchcock Chicken with Pan-Roasted Radishes and Green Beans Recipe

For Chicken:

1 or 2 whole chickens, cleaned and spatchcocked per above directions, dried top and bottom

Note: if cooking two chickens you will need two skillets

Rub with:

1 T coarse, Kosher salt

1 tsp black pepper

Note: Salt and pepper are enough to enhance chicken’s natural flavor, but there are great grilling rubs everywhere. Pick your favorite and rub away!

Place spatchcocked chickens on wire baking racks placed over baking sheet.

Sprinkle salt and pepper (or rub of choice) over chickens. Let sit at room temperature for an hour or refrigerate uncovered for up to 4 to 24 hours to dry brine and tenderize.

Heat grill to 350°F.

Lightly oil grill. Place chicken skin side down on grates. Lightly oil aluminum foil and place on chicken oil side down. Place cast iron skillet on top of foil and grill for 15 minutes, or until skin is desired amount of crispness.

Remove skillet and discard foil. Add 1 T oil in skillet. Put chicken into skillet skin side up. Roast covered with grill lid closed until chicken registers 165°F, approximately 30 to 45 minutes.

Remove chicken to clean plate and cover loosely with foil. Allow chicken to rest for 15 minutes. Cut chicken into pieces and serve.

Each chicken serves 4.

For radishes and beans:

1 bunch radishes, stems and tops removed, halved

1/2 lb green beans, trimmed

2 T olive oil

salt and pepper

Place vegetables in bowl and toss with oil, salt, and pepper to coat.

While chicken is resting, place vegetables in cast iron skillet on grill, cover and cook with grill lid closed for 10 minutes, tossing occasionally. The radishes should be lightly browned and the beans charred in spots.

Serve immediately with chicken.

Award-winning author Emily Kemme — Musings, recipes, and a touch of satire. Follow her on her blog, Feeding the Famished or on Twitter @EmFeedsYou .

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Bedrock announces Downtown Detroit Markets spring line-up

A slew of market vendors will be operating in downtown Detroit this summer, offering everything from handmade accessories and trendy styles to housewares and desserts.

The Downtown Detroit Markets, sponsored by Bedrock Detroit and the Quicken Loans Community Investment Fund, with support from the Downtown Detroit Partnership, are set to open Thursday with the first phase of vendors operating this spring and summer.

The second phase of vendors will be announced mid-summer, according to a news release. 

The spring and summer markets come after retailers, plus food beverage vendors, raked in over $2 million via the Downtown Detroit Markets last winter, Francesca George, Bedrock’s Director of Tenant Relations Experience said.

A news release said the first 30 vendors setting up for Thursday will feature 10 apparel vendors, nine accessories vendors and six food and beverage vendors. All metro Detroit-based entrepreneurs, more than 50% are minority-owned and the majority are women-owned. 

The businesses can be found at 1441 Woodward Collective, Capitol Park and Cadillac Square. 

Here’s a look at the shopping options and amenities headed to the markets: 

1441 Woodward Collective 

The space at 1441 Woodward Collective is designed to serve as an indoor retail incubator. It will offer a “highly curated retail atmosphere with an emphasis on boutique and home goods,” a press release said. 

Vendors include:

  • Fly Behavior: A stylist-curated collection geared toward “a true-to-herself influencer, strong and takes chances.”
  • Detroit GT: A design and apparel brand with original products that promote Detroit. 
  • Ferne Boutique: Women’s clothing for all ages.
  • David Vintage: “A Haute Couture Streetwear lifestyle brand” for men and women that offers streetwear, outerwear and unique accessories.
  • MATURE: Exceptional fit and hand-selected men’s products that are “modern yet timeless.” 
  • Mira Estell: Unique handbags and accessories.
  • Purpose Planner: Stylish stationery that bolsters “the art of planning.”
  • Elaine B:Handmade geometric jewelry made from recycled silver and responsibly-sourced stones.
  • Goldeluxe: Brass, sterling silver, 14k gold and 14k gold fill jewelry made with traditional lost wax casting and metal smithing techniques.
  • Pingree Detroit: Leather and hemp totes brought to life by localized, sustainable, community-supported production powered by veterans and civilians.
  • Front Scenter:Handmade candles and fragrances.
  • 12th  VIV: Handmade candles, creams and scrubs.
  • Beau Dillion: Bow ties with unique patterns and fine fabrics. 

Hours of operation are: Monday through Friday, noon to 7 p.m., Saturday from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 6 p.m. 

Capitol Park

Francesca George of Bedrock described Capitol Park as “a summer oasis.” A rotating chef kitchen bar created in partnership with Jeremy Sasson of Townhouse and Prime + Proper is in the works. 

George said they’re working on bringing in a food truck where meals will be served, a shipping container where the bar will be located and wood pergola where guests can find tables and chairs. While Sasson will typically be running daily food services, George said every Wednesday at the park, a new chef will take the reigns and craft the dining experience. 

According to a news release, a farmer’s market is planned for the site every Tuesday starting in mid-June. George said they will focus on locally sourced items. 

Vendors include:

Additionally, pending permit approval, the following food carts also have spots at Capitol Park:

Markets will be open Tuesday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m, Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Food and beverages will be available Tuesday through Thursday from noon to 10 p.m., Friday and Saturday from noon to midnight and Sunday from noon to 7 p.m. 

The pop-up farmers market will be open on Tuesdays from noon to 4 p.m. 

Cadillac Square

Cadillac Square will feature a seasonal beer garden that will be opening to the public on Friday. According to a press release, Central Kitchen + Bar will be serving cocktails on tap, wine and frozen drinks, plus Atwater Brewery and Great Lakes Beverage Co. will offer “a unique mix” of beers on tap. Also, Cortina Local will be providing German-inspired food options. 

The Quicken Loans Sports Zone is also at Cadillac Square, George said four half-court basketball courts and other family-friendly features, like a kid’s basketball net and lawn games, are available to the public. 

Vendors include:

  • Ink Detroit: Apparel that embodies “Detroit Pride and Love.”
  • Ashley Gold: Handmade, fashionable jewelry.
  • York: Streetwear designed, printed and made in Detroit. 
  • Flamingo Vintage: Men’s and women’s clothing and accessories that date back to the 1920s through 1970s.
  • Albert’s General Store: Michigan home décor, gifts and clothing.
  • Motor City Popcorn: Gourmet popcorn that comes in a variety of delicious flavors with Detroit themes, like the 8 Mile Mix, the Belle Isle Blend and the Motor City Mix.
  • Made in Detroit: The Kid Rock brand that’s been making apparel for the city for 20 years. 
  • Plus, there’s space for a rotating retail vendor

Markets will be open Tuesday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m, Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.

The beer garden will be open Tuesday through Thursday noon to 11 p.m., Friday and Saturday from noon to 1 a.m. and Sunday from noon to 8 p.m. 

For more information about the markets and other Detroit happenings, visit or follow @xodetroit on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. 

Contact reporter Aleanna Siacon at Follow her on Twitter: @AleannaSiacon. 

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